Braking Issues Halt George’s Progress in Japan
George Russell finished the Japanese Grand Prix in 18th position, beating ROKiT Williams Racing team-mate Robert Kubica to the chequered flag while combatting a braking issue throughout the 52-lap affair.
After previously racing in the Black Sea resort town of Sochi, Formula One returned to Japan for the 17th Grand Prix of the 2019 season, racing at the Suzuka Circuit.
With a looming threat from the east in the form of Typhoon Hagibis - Japan’s worst storm in 60 years - the weekend was disjoined, with Saturday’s traditional qualifying session getting rescheduled to Sunday morning.
In turbulent conditions, George once more prevailed over ROKiT Williams Racing team-mate Robert Kubica in qualifying, securing 18th on the grid while also benefitting from an accident for Kevin Magnussen.
Starting from the ninth row of the grid on a set of Medium tyres, George experienced a lonely race that was compounded by braking issues, running as high as 17th place in the opening stages following pit stops for Charles Leclerc and Lando Norris.
Utilising a one-stop strategy, George pitted on lap 25 to run on a set of slower yet more durable Hard compound tyres, taking 18th at the wave of the chequered flag.
George Russell - ROKiT Williams Racing Driver
“Qualifying was incredibly tricky to be honest, especially through the Esses. It made it unpredictable, and it was pretty sketchy on my lap, but I gave it everything and I think overall, we overachieved so I was pleased with that.
“It was an incredibly tricky race for us. We had some brake issues throughout which made it quite difficult. It was definitely one of the tougher races of the season. I have mixed feelings, but I can be satisfied, waking up this morning I felt fresh and I did the job.”
The 2019 Formula One season will continue at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez for the Mexican Grand Prix from October 25-27.
Photographs Courtesy of XPB Images
Additional Press Content Courtesy of ROKiT Williams Racing